The 8 Worst Mistakes Facebook Advertising Rookies Make

The invention of Facebook revolutionized many different areas of our lives. Today, however, one of the biggest benefactors has been businesses.

Companies large and small have all flocked to take advantage of the reported 2.7 billion active users today.

If you are included among them or plan to join in with the party it is important to note that simply using Facebook advertising doesn’t guarantee success.

In fact, there are numerous pitfalls that people do that lead to their efforts falling flat. If you don’t want to be included among them keep on reading to learn what Facebook advertising mistakes to avoid.

1. Not Having Clear Objectives

Getting in a car without knowing where you are going would be a waste of time for those of us who have busy lives, even if you are partial to enjoying long relaxing drives.

Aimless activity when money is on the line, however, is even more damaging.

For this reason, when deciding to do anything related to Facebook advertising, it is important to have a destination to aim for and a clear strategy mapping out how to get there.

New users of the platform can sometimes fall into the trap of creating an ad, then get disheartened when the results don’t go their way. Facebook’s inbuilt features when selected correctly, however, actually align themselves to serve your goals.

Ask yourself:

  • Am I trying to sell something here?
  • Do I want to improve community engagement?
  • Is my aim to promote brand awareness?

It may seem that choosing the traffic option would boost results in all of these, but in reality that will place your ad in front of people who are not in the habit of providing their information, converting into sales.

Having clear objectives and a good understanding of the actions that Facebook’s algorithm will take can make all the difference between an ad campaign being a success or a failure.

2. Not Maximizing Your CTA

Connected to your objectives are your calls to action (CTA).

When it comes to CTA’s there are two things to consider, using Facebook’s CTA feature and the type of copy you use.

We are lazy by nature and even more so when placed in front of a screen. Facebook knows this and for this reason, they have incorporated CTA buttons that can be added to your ads. Not using them would be like having your product in your window but not having a cash register in your store. So choose one that aligns with your ad campaign goal and then track the results.

Next to consider is the type of language used to hook your potential customer. Aim to pique interest, use action words that make clear what you want them to do, and highlight the value that they can gain by clicking on your ad.

There is a reason great copy is highly sought after, so don’t be happy with just putting any old words on your ad. If given careful consideration, it can boost your conversion rates exponentially.

3. Don’t Press Boost!

We get it, you’re a busy person, and creating an ad takes time.

For this reason, the boost function seems so tempting. So many people opt to click boost on posts under the pretense that it will take the hard work away from you, and you can be safe in the knowledge that your content will be seen by many.

The problem is that just having eyes on your content won’t yield results if they are not the right people. The boost button can help in getting people to like, share and comment on your post but it is pointless if you want them to exchange their information or, even better, spend their money with you.

Take the time to go through the process on Facebook Ads Manager instead.

The extra 10–15 mins spent will enable you to better fine-tune your ads, as well as, track results and Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) which will serve you better in the long run.

4. Only Using Facebook Advertising for the Hard Sell

No matter the industry you are in, winning over your customers from the competition is a must. However, the desire to do this can lead to pushy ads that can hurt your image.

A common mistake is forgetting that Facebook advertising is a nuanced beast where you need to win over people’s trust over time rather than a traditional hard sell.

To combat this you really need to think about how your sales funnel is affected by your content.

Cold audiences can be won over if the content is entertaining, informative, or highlights why you are a market leader in your field through testimonials or other means.

You can do this with videos, carousel content, or photos. After running the ad campaign, you can then focus more direct sales ads on those who clicked through or watched some of your content.

5. Enjoying A Successful Ad Campaign And Forgetting That It May Not Last Forever

Getting an ad finally posted can seem like the finishing line for many but not paying attention to ad maintenance is another pitfall that many rookies fall into.

You may have specified your audience and tweaked your ad to perfection but understanding human nature also comes into play. Ad fatigue is an understandable phenomenon of consumers, as even the most entertaining ad can get old quickly.

You can combat this in a number of ways.

One technique is to change the copy or even the creative in a once successful ad by changing the picture or using different shots from the same video. Alternatively, you could change your audience and put it in front of some fresh faces.

Changing your targeting in your ad set is easy to do and it is likely that a community that has similar interests to your core consumer group will find your message appealing.

Staying on top of any dips in performance is vital to you remaining successful in a competitive market.

6. Not Clearly Understanding Your Target Audience

Before the internet, all businesses had to go on to find out who made up their audience was customer surveys. Oh how far we have come!

Now information is available on everything from age, nationality and spending habits. While these targeting features are built into Facebook advertising, what you never want to do is leave it to guesswork.

It is easy for rookies to assume what they know their customers rather than to take the time to do the research, be it online or face to face.

Experienced marketers merge the knowledge that they already have of their buyer personas with Facebook advertising tools like Audience Insights to make sure that even if they try something new, it never is fully off the mark. Your goal should be to do the same.

7. Making Your Target Audience Too Small

As we have seen, it is possible to get specific with who we want to see our ad. At times another mistake is going to the other extreme and narrowing our reach to too small of an audience.

Remember that when using the bidding system a small audience will mean a smaller pool of people to place your ad in front of. Beware that bidding wars will be more expensive with fellow advertisers going for that specific group than if you have more people to choose from.

The numbers will vary depending on if your business is local, national, or international. A good rule is no smaller than 200–250,000 as this will provide some legroom for the algorithm to do its magic.

One important factor in all of this is your budget, so align your size to fit the best that you can afford and use the dial that indicates the likeliness of your ad is delivered.

8. Not Having Alternative Options

Poet John Ludgate is credited with saying “You can please some of the people all of the time, you can please all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.” Nowhere is this more true than in advertising.

A common mistake is thinking that because you are happy with how an ad looks, no more needs to be done. It may be great for your tastes but what about your customers? Not creating alternative options for the same ad campaign leaves you missing out on the advantages Facebook advertising has over TV and other mediums.

By running A/B test ads, you can easily change formats or images. Facebook will then show the ad to a sample of your audience and depending on what gets good engagement you can focus on one and bin the rest allowing your budget to be stretched that little further on what you know works.

Get the Most Out of Facebook Advertising

Over the course of years working on the platform, we at Tyche Digital Media have been able to prove ourselves effective in getting results that our clients want from Facebook advertising with our Facebook ads management services. With a little understanding of the system, your campaigns can soar.

Get it right the first time around by getting on a call with us today. We’d be thrilled to help you reach your goals.


Grab this guide if you need effective techniques to minimize your Facebook ad costs.


Results-driven, dynamic Director of Sales & Marketing turned Certified Master Marketer, Tammy uses all of her digital marketing smarts for good…she has managed millions of dollars in top-line revenue and hundreds of thousands of dollars in advertising spend while consistently generating a 2:1 return inside the Facebook & Google Ad platforms. Follow Tammy on Facebook & Instagram.

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